Federal Government says it will sanction airlines selling tickets in dollars.

The Minister of Aviation, Alhaji Hadi Sirika, who, gave this in Abuja while fielding questions from newsmen on the development, said the practice was against agreement signed with them.

He said the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority, NCAA, had already been instructed to make a move on the matter by protecting the interest of Nigerians against the erring airlines, warning that no violator, no matter how highly placed, would be spared if caught in violation.

Alhaji Hadi Sirika said the government would further sanction another group of erring airlines it had just identified, which have blocked local travel agencies from accessing their websites for transactions.

The Minister urged the airlines to stop taking arbitrary decisions, and instead go through diplomatic channels to lay complaints appropriately.

The Minister stressed that foreign airlines made over 1.1 billion dollars from Nigeria in 2016, when the Muhammadu Buhari Administration cleared the 600 million dollars it inherited from the previous government, emphasising that had the money been retained in the country through Nigerian official airline, it would have created jobs.

On the allegation that the Federal Government has spent 14.6 billion Naira on Nigeria Air, the Minister said such lies were embarrassing.

He explained that the government had only spent 651 million Naira for transactional advisory services, approved by the Federal Executive Council, which is yet to be disbursed, as the consultants are yet to finish their work.

Bello Wakili